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Tattoos. Cultures that Use Tattoo and Methods of Tattooing - Research Paper Example

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Over the years, body art has greatly evolved into forms like piercings, face painting, and even full body painting. A very common form of body art is the art of tattooing, which has become increasingly popular. It is estimation that “more than 10 million people in the United States have tattoos”…
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Tattoos. Cultures that Use Tattoo and Methods of Tattooing
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Download file to see previous pages Although usually considered by some as a mere way of accessorizing one’s body with the typical dragon or butterfly, tattoos are regarded as an outlet of creativity and a medium of expression by those who truly understand and appreciate art. While tattoos often seem to carry negative associations as the images of gangs of tough biker boys, and their promiscuous girlfriends come to mind as you think of such body decoration, they are also considered greatly meaningful and significant by various cultures. The people of Thailand regard getting tattoos as a religious ritual and they are often used to illustrate holy symbols like tigers, temples, or verses from sacred prayers. In contrast to this, the Japanese culture used tattoos to brand criminals permanently, which worked like a public display of one’s acts. Similarly, in Germany as well, tattooing prisoners with serial numbers meant making it easier to identify them. Such usage of tattooing explains why tattoos are associated with gangsters and mafia men. On the other hand, however, some Germans have also redeemed the status of tattooing to that of a form of a body art by using women’s bodies as their canvases to decorate and consequently display their artistic talents. Native tribes of the Polynesian Islands over the Pacific Ocean have taken this a step further as they regard tattooing as a representation of one’s social standing, as they employ tattoos to illustrate lineage, rank in society and sexuality (Wianecki, 2011). In Western cultures, as one can see on the television, the tattoo culture is greatly dominant, since numerous Hollywood actors like Eva Longoria, Megan Fox, and Ben Affleck, among others, are seen showing off their tattoos on their lower backs, necks, ankles and various other body parts. In addition to this, the tattoo culture is on the rise and has truly become a rage as icons such as Avril Lavigne and David Beckham choose to display their individuality through a tiny tattoo on the wrist, or through large ones on the back and arms (Mifflin, 1997). As these celebrities are looked up to by huge fan followings, which instantly mimic their favorite idols, the tattooed populace in the world has increased greatly. As published by the Daily News in Los Angeles, “Credible statistics on the number of people with tattoos are actually tough to find. But in 2006, the Pew Research Center stated that 36 percent of Americans ages 18-25, 40 percent of those 26-40 and 10 percent of people 41-64 have tattoos” (Auerbach, 2011). It is safe to say that the numbers have only been on the rise ever since. Methods Recently, tattooing has also become increasingly popular for being instrumental as a method of plastic surgery for areola reconstruction (Aston, 2009). The most common tool used for tattooing is an electrically powered tattoo machine that uses a needle or group of needles to drill ineradicable ink onto the skin in order to decorate the body permanently with a tattoo. After this painful procedure is undertaken, the tattoo becomes a part of a person’s attire as well as his/her personality, and is shown off as a style statement, or a symbol of something one believes in, or, as in the case of some Indian actresses like Deepika Padukone, even a symbol of love for one’s partner. This convenient method of tattooing with a drill-like machine, however, has been discovered only recently. Since tattooing had started a long way back, when technology was not as advanced, various other methods were under utilization to make color penetrate into the skin. In some tribal cultures, designs are cut into the skin and ink rubbing cause color. In others, ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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